Originally from Brooklyn, NY, writer, poet, spoken word performer, and playwright, John Biscello now lives in Taos, New Mexico. He is the author of three novels: Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale, Raking the Dust, and Nocturne Variations, and a collection of stories, Freeze Tag.
His fiction and poetry has appeared in: Art Times, nthposition, The Wanderlust Review, Ophelia Street, Caper, Polyphony, Dilate, Militant Roger, Chokecherries, Farmhouse, BENT, The 555 Collective, Instigator, Brass Sopaipilla, The Iconoclast, Adobe Walls, Kansas City Voices, and the Tishman Review. His blog--Notes of an Urban Stray--can be read at johnbiscello.blogspot.com. Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale was named Underground Book Reviews 2014 Book of the Year.
Greetings, soul-folks, and much love as we groove into the creatively charged and spiritually Roaring 20s!
I am thrilled to announce that our crowdsourcing campaign for Ballad of the Cuckoos has officially launched, beneath the gilded magic of tonight’s full moon lunar eclipse. Ballad of the Cuckoos is a short film I wrote and will be directing–a surreal torch song meets Laurel and Hardy in the Twilight Zone–and it will feature Rita O’ Connell and Clint Murphy, with Troy Paff as the film’s director of photography.
Indeed, it takes a village to raise an indie film, and in our case it will take a village of cuckoos to help us raise our baby from the ground floor to the big screen. If you want to be a part of our inspired flight and cinemagical adventure, please peruse our campaign page, and take a few moments to view our “teaser” pitch video. Throughout the campaign, we will be offering reveals, behind-the-scenes footage, interactive engagements, announcements, and more. There are a variety of perks available for backers, including books, T-shirts featuring the Cuckoo logo designed by the inimitable Izumi Yokoyama, and opportunities to put on a fedora at a rakishly tilted angle while living out your secret dream of being a “movie-maker” as you join our team as a producer or executive producer.
Also, if you cannot contribute financially, please consider spreading the word via social media, and helping our Cuckoo wing its way into as many minds and hearts as possible.
To remix a bit of warmed-over lightning
from the immortal good advice of one
Mr. James Brown—Now is the time
to jump back and kiss yourself,
and become best first mate
to your own extraordinary soul.
The Spiritually Roaring 20s have begun.
Pens uncapped, paintbrushes rhythmically swishing,
bodies in unison rocking the boogie-woogie,
voices raised from heaps of ash-cake
into the fresh air and newness of day—
souls are gathering
as if being conducted by the baton wizardry
of Mister Electric Boogaloo himself, Walt Whitman,
as if supple gospel notes harmonizing
in a choir comprised of Nina Simone
ten times over—
Now is the time
to heed the soul’s bright
and true and feral callings,
and to trust in the seeing-eye guides
of in-visioned sources, claims and trailers
that flash cinemagical previews ala Intuition.
How to do this?
Perhaps, you can start by jumping back
and kissing yourself,
while remembering the soft pearly wisdom
of that Little Prince who once came to visit—
“What is essential is invisible to the eye,
it is only with the heart that one can see rightly.”
Welcome to the book that is your life.
Feel free to write outide the margins, read between the lines,
and turn the pages
to see what comes next.
Houses of a Crystal Muse, a poetic dialogue/collaboration between myself and Antoinette Nora Claypoole, will be released by Wild Embers Press next week. Also featuring images by Issa de Nicola and Anthony Distefano. Wild Embers is offering free review copies.
Here is one of the poems from the book:
true to your own scythe,
perpetrate with fierce love,
small necessary deaths,
whispering sweet winged words
of encouragement to your reaper,
Hurry now, slowly,
and bless my broken softly,
bless every last ghost
through the numinous host
and watch me
this side of dream,
to the swell
of commonest prayers.